Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Child Behavior and Development

pp 48-49

Adolescent Egocentrism

  • Jeremy JewellAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Email author 
  • , Nicole PepinAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville


Egocentrism; Imaginary audience; Personal fable


Adolescent egocentrism is generally a heightened preoccupation with the self occurring during adolescence. Specifically, newly developed cognitive abilities give adolescents an exaggerated sense of uniqueness from others and also allows the adolescent to monitor their own thoughts though they do not clearly distinguish their own thinking from the thinking of others.


Egocentrism is generally the tendency to view the world from one’s internal point of view with less recognition that others beyond oneself may hold different views, perspectives, and beliefs. Egocentrism is particularly strong during infancy and childhood, though it manifests itself in different ways, while egocentrism to some extent remains throughout adulthood as well. Adolescent egocentrism is defined by the fact that egocentric thought and behavior is heightened in adolescence when compared to typical adulthood, as well as the fact that newly dev ...

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